Encyclopedias and References

All Medway Libraries' members have free online access to a wide range of encyclopedias and reference works.

Access to Research

Free online access to published academic research and scientific papers on a huge range of subjects. This online service is available from a Medway library computer.

View the Access to Research website

American National Biography Online

Over 19,000 biographies of important, influential or well known figures (no longer alive) from American history written by prominent scholars.

View the American National Biography Online

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Oxford University Press (OUP) has made content from online resources and leading journals available to help researchers, medical professionals, policy makers, and others who are working to address this health crisis.

View OUP resources on COVID-19

Encyclopaedia Britannica Online (Library Edition - Adult)

A fully fact-checked online encyclopedia with hundreds of thousands of objective articles, biographies, videos, and images. You will need your library card to access from outside the library.

View the Encyclopaedia Britannica online

Encyclopaedia Britannica Online (Library Edition - Student)

For 12 to 18 year olds, this is a fantastic study tool bridging the gap between the junior and adult editions. You will need your library card to access from outside the library. 

View the Encyclopaedia Britannic student version online

Encyclopaedia Britannica Online (Library Edition - Junior)

For 5 to 11 year olds, this is designed to help with homework, projects and general interest. You will need your library card to access from outside the library.

View the Encyclopaedia Britannica junior version online

Lexico: English Dictionary, Thesaurus and Grammar Help

Powered by Oxford, Lexico's dictionary and thesaurus offers trusted English definitions, synonyms, and grammar guides for native speakers and language learners.

It is free to use.

Visit the Lexico website

Life in the UK Test

Free online access to help you prepare for and pass the life in the UK test. 

View the GOV.UK Life in the UK advice

Oxford Bibliographies

Bibliographies of the best writers, books and studies on almost any subject.

Free with your library card. Your login is your library card number beginning with D or 056. 

You do not need to log in if using a Medway Libraries' computer. 

View the Oxford Bibliographies

The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

A dictionary of famous and important people (no longer alive) connected to the United Kingdom.

Free with your library card. Your login is your library card number beginning with D or 056. 

You do not need to log in when using a Medway Libraries' computer. 

View the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

The Oxford English Dictionary

The definitive online record of the English language, explaining the meaning, history, and pronunciation of more than 600,000 English words - past and present.

Free with your library card. Your login is your library card number beginning with D or 056. 

You do not need to log in if using a Medway Libraries' computer. 

View the Oxford English Dictionary

Oxford Reference Online

References for subjects from Archaeology all the way to Zoology, including dictionaries for English, other languages and quotations.

Free with your library card. Your login is your library card number beginning with D or 056. 

You do not need to log in when using a Medway Libraries' computer.

View the Oxford Reference online

Very Short Introductions

Short, accurate introductions to hundreds of topics, all written by experts in that field.

The 10 titles available in our collection are:

  • British Politics
  • Contemporary Art 
  • Drugs
  • The Earth
  • History
  • Management
  • Mathematics
  • Management
  • Nutrition
  • Planets
  • Twentieth-Century Britain

Free with your library card. Your login is your library card number beginning with D or 056. 

You do not need to log in if using a Medway libraries computer.

View the Very Short Introductions online

Which?

Which? does more than just test washing machines. They campaign to get a fairer deal for all consumers and publish expert, unbiased information to help you make the right choice, whatever you're buying.

This online resource is available only at Chatham LibraryCommunity Hub Chatham.

Members of the public will need to ask a member of staff for assistance to log in. 

View Which? online